10 Life Lessons from Albert Einstein

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1. Follow Your Curiosity: “I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.”
2. Perseverance is Priceless: “It’s not that I’m so smart; it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”
3. Focus on the Present: “Any man who can drive safely while kissing a
    pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves.”
4. Imagination is Powerful: “Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.
    Imagination is more important than knowledge.”
5. Make Mistakes: “A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.”
6. Live in the Moment: “I never think of the future – it comes soon enough.”
7. Create Value: “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.”
8. Don’t Be Repetitive: “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”
9. Knowledge Comes From Experience: “Information is not knowledge.
    The only source of knowledge is experience.”
X. Learn the Rules and Then Play Better: “You have to learn the rules of the game.
    And then you have to play better than anyone else.”

Empower your Employees

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How do you make your team more efficient? You empower them to take ownership over their work.

“Empowered people are crucial to any organization’s success,” says Dan Sanker, CEO of logistics outsourcing company CaseStack, in his post on LinkedIn. “They will go the extra mile for clients, colleagues, and the company. They are happier, more productive, and more independent, which allows the whole team to be more productive.”

But how do you empower your organization? Sanker says it’s all about building a culture that encourages open communication, provides plenty of context, and requires accountability.

1. Encourage open communication.

Organizations that use a formal top-down communication hierarchy make it difficult for their employees to speak up. Even if they did gather enough guts to share their opinions, they may feel like their input won’t matter much. After awhile, these people may give up on speaking up.

“Create methods for direct communication,” writes Sanker. “Acknowledge input. Foster an open exchange of ideas. Face facts — every idea isn’t good, but you won’t find the game-changers if you don’t explore new concepts.”

2. Provide plenty of context.

Be transparent with your employees. Tell them why you make certain decisions and what direction you’re planning on taking the company.

“If we can do a better job of sharing the core values and the important business goals, we can hope to draw out team members’ talents and energy,” he says.

3. Require accountability.

The best way to do this is by discussing setbacks and recognizing extra efforts among your people. Why would someone want to continuously work hard if they don’t think that their efforts are appreciated?

“Empowered people are confident, knowledgeable, and able to be more productive without being micromanaged or having excessive oversight,” Sanker says. “They demonstrate initiative and own their work.” At the end of the day, this is better for you as their superior and better for the organization as a whole.

Effective Email Communication

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October 09, 2013

Write Emails That People Will Read

Corporate employees receive and send more than 100 emails a day on average, and competition for readers’ attention is fierce. Luckily, crafting emails that encourage people to read and act is relatively easy. Before you start typing:

  • Put the subject line to work. Most of us already use our subject line to predict the “what” of the email, e.g. “Monthly Financials.” But it’s also the place to build a personal bridge: “Monthly Financials, per Peter’s request,” or to indicate urgency: “Monthly Financials. Need feedback by Tuesday.”
  • Visually highlight the key message. Clear structure and typographical signaling, like bolding and bullets, will boost the odds that your reader will get your message quickly and respond in ways that meet your goal.
  • Time the delivery for maximum impact. Never send an email at the end of the day or the start of a weekend. Make sure people are opening it at a time when they’re at their desks and have time to read it.

Courtesy : HBR  “The Art of Irresistible Email,” by Katie Smith Milway.

Avoid Blind Spot and Personal Comfort Zone

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When your company grows quickly and you’re in a leadership position, there are a few things you need to be aware of.

“One is personal blind spots and the other is personal comfort zones,” Francisco D’Souza, CEO of information technology company Cognizant, tells Adam Bryant at The New York Times.“Those two things can be real gotchas.”

D’Souza says it’s difficult to see your own blind spot because most people would rather stay in their comfort zones. However, if you want to make it in today’s fast-changing world, you need to push harder as soon as you start feeling comfortable.

You can identify these blind spots by talking to other leaders “because they are, in a sense, a mirror,” he says.

“I can assess what I think they’re doing well, and where I think their blind spots are,” says D’Souza. “It’s easier to see someone else’s blind spots than it is to see your own, of course, and you can use that to reflect on what your own blind spots are.”

Courtesy : Businessinsider.com